The Blade's Tools
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[participant in the Royal Road Writathon challenge]
Imagine having a life...
Humble, yet satisfying,
Tangible, and pure,
Exciting, yet simple.
To wake up having a roof over your head, a roof shared among your closest. Imagine living together with people that respected you.
Imagine having a beloved one...
One with whom you wished to lavish the whole of your life.
Imagine wanting these blissful days to never come to an end.
Imagine someone having a different scheme...
The one which desolates your will. Ending everything you wished. Will that be your end?
The end is for those who are not bold enough, not strong enough.
Stripped of your very life will you dare to chase the designer of this scheme?
And in the end, you are not offered power, but just another chance... Will you take it?
Oh, you do? Great! in that case, all you have to do, is to sign one, itty, bitty, tinny deal! ... You aren't going to turn back now, aren't you?
Cover by: Kingofgraphics_; https://www.fiverr.com/kingofgraphics_
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I was a little worried near the start because they make a lot of grammatical errors and other such mistakes. However, as you read you will notice a marked progression in quality. I like the story, it's quite unique. I also appreciate that the main character isn't consumed by vengeance, that's his main motivation but he is still relatable.
Short review:it is mostly first person with the rare other perspective,it utilizes many fantasy tropes but includes interesting surprises, it is written with remarkably good english, and the characters are interesting with traits shown that are not always told to you. I am just going to jump into the long review.
It is written in first person, and uses that to its advantage. The main character is typically the information source through which we get the story. This means that some information is not instantly given to the reader if the main character doesn’t realize it. As an example, a certain female does something while helping him train. This something is hidden from the reader until the next chapter where we get her perspective. These perspective shifts are done after the scene has ended, and are obvious enough that we aren’t guessing what is happening. Thus, if a perspective shift happens and we don’t know who it is, we as readers will likely know that is the point. Using this system, the story can organically give information, withhold information, and give extra information the main character wouldn't know about to the reader to keep the story moving. The system isn’t groundbreaking, but it works remarkably well, 5 out of 5 stars.
As of writing this, most of the world hasn’t been shown, the story is primarily focused on someone named Aster and his revenge plot. Except it isn’t. He gets caught up in things, and sometimes fails. He gets told to go to a standard dungeon, only to wind up a part of what can only be explained in a non-spoiler way as a supernatural-unnatural disaster. I guess it would be better to call this the tale of revenge that is put on hold, and became the tale of growth and adventure. If you read his previous work, then you will probably enjoy this one. If you haven’t, then you won’t be missing much in this story as they explain what you need to know. Honestly, I am not sure how to describe it without spoiling some of the story, highly recommended, 5 out of 5.
His grammar is usually good. It’s not Shakespeare level, but you likely came to read a book that doesn’t need to be translated into plain tongue. Usually the most it will take you out of the reading experience is when the word “the” is written as “he”, or something else small. If you look carefully, there is bound to be some mistake in each chapter when it first comes out. Usually if a commenter notes this it is fixed. I would consider this a 4.5 out of 5 in grammar.
The characters in this story are fully believable. Not in the way that you feel like you know the character, but have met them. I feel like I can tell what is important to the character. Some of them are curious, others focus more on their faith, some go with what they feel is the right thing to do. The character traits are not just described but also shown. The teacher that puts him in situations that are an actual danger and a time limit is obviously more strict than the teacher who says spar with me until you are exhausted. However, you should be able to pick up that the second teacher would also be strict, not because I wrote something like “strict teacher “but because it is “until exhaustion”. The main villain the main character wants revenge on actually isn’t pure evil. I hate him, but I understand him. I expect some of the future antagonists will be this way. The fact that the main character wants revenge but is still a good person in most other aspects shows that the author can add depth to characters when needed. I enjoy the characters, 5 out of 5 for sure.
Another story written by anuel, though it's still at it's infancy, i have high expectations, all i hope is he avoids his last mistakes (the hates thing left unfinished, speaking about a training arc and not having one 100 chapters later, adding many side-characters, promising them chapters but never delivering....etc)
Well then, since someone just had to complain, i'll try writing an actual review, please take it with a pinch of salt as this is my first actual review, please give your own opinion in the comment, oh and if possible please do help out the author, because from the sh*t that has happend to him, i just can't help but feel bad for the poor sob.
Well then, let's start why don't we.
What can i say? It's anuel, his style is obvious, straight forward, no peotic nonsense (except for the chants) and all together simple, the description is good as it never leaves not understanding the area and gives a solid image in your head, if this is like and last story, and based on what we have so far(~100 pages) we can expect a fast world, and mc getting caught together with a bunch of gods, and politcs but i don't expect it on a mass scale, though what i would like for the author to add is something andur style, a frequent change of pov of some random villager/monster (can be added in the author's note) or some book samples written in the start as that would add flavour.
Cliché? But nowadays what isn't a guy with a good life gets the short end of the stick but gets another chance, but here's the twist, the "bad guy" is not driven by "evil", which would lead me to believe that the author subscribe's to the *world is grey* school of thought, every guy is simply driven by motives, other than that the gods will get their champions, to fight our mc, oh and our mc isn't some op creature, he actually starts off as the weakest of the weak (he starts in the forest like somebody else did in the past...) i do expect zari to send him to some quest of epic proportion, i can't wait for more interaction between them, what also good is the fact that the author is polish, so we have a whoooole new slew of monster and folklore (see The Witcher) new legends and characters, and we already now that the author has already proven his awesome imagination.
Give him some slack, english isn't his native tongue, and it also isn't mine but i could understand perfectly, what he misses are some "a, the..." Etc some simple stuff but not that important, but i can say that this is the weakest part of the story(where are your slaves anuel...?)
No black or white, nobody does anything just because, every body has a reason, and mostly of the author's characters are smart, i do like the way anuel does his interaction so that's a thing to look forwards for.
Endnote : most of this review was based of the last story, but that only because i know it will look like, just better. I wish we could go back to the good old days, where the comments were filled with crazy people, with hundreds of people commenting and adding to the lore, and with polls deciding the story, and us making fun of him for getting shafted(he won't admit it be he did get hit with a shaft, albeit a baseball one)
Good luck anuel, i wish you all the best.
Story is well written and the grammar is mostly on point. The occasional typo doesn't detract from the interesting characters and narative that is being built. Aster just keeps on going no matter what is thrown his way. Can't wait to see how this next arc turns out. Definatly give this book a try.
Edit #1 - chapter 55
Added another star to grammar since the quality has gone up the last 10 or so chapters.
This is a story for all who likes well thought out characters and plot lines. This is, however, not a story for the grammar police.
Let me be clear, the authors strengths are in writing complex characters which never feels forced or out of place. The protagonist is great and all interaction with other people are believable and conversation flows beatifully. The side characters have their own quirks and tone that makes them alive. Even minor monster bosses (like that old goblin) have a great fleshed out story.
The story have a major goal in mind, not just powerleveling into some OP pwning force of destruction. The journey to that goal is lined with minor goals as well.
Now, the downside with Anuels writing comes down to just one part, his grammar. English isn't his first language and it shows. Sometimes sentences can be confusing and on rare occasion hard to understand. But you can always get the meaning of what he wants to say anyway.
In his first novel here on RR, the romance between the main character and his dragonlady was SUPER GOOD. Feelings got conveyed directly to your heart, it all felt REAL. And any smack talk and light banter between adventurers feels very natural.
So, in conclusion, would I recommend this story? Yes, I would. Because I think that the story and characters are at such a high level.
Okay so, I admit that the prologue felt a bit heavy for my taste, despite it perfectly fulfilling the goals of a prologue (introduce character, world, motivation) BUT, hear me out
the author has a unique style that many, myself included, find pretty cool, each character feels like it has purpose, goals, and motivation, each character is truly alive, something that is truly hard to do, the story doesn't put the MC on a pedestal, or make him this perfect god (like many modern novels do) he's a person that tries his best like all characters.
Grammar wise, I never noticed mistakes, so props to both author and editor.
the world-building is pretty great, the world feels alive and changing, you don't get the 'because magic' or the 'a wizard did it' even the magic and the gods feels like it's an integral part of the world, something opposed to most world-building where you just take a medieval setting and slap wizards on top of it.
the storyline so far is pretty interesting, the character, despite what happened to him, still wants to help, to be useful, he doesn't turn dark and edgy all of a sudden, he sticks to his ideals so far.
All in all, it's an enjoyable read past the prologue, I wish I could give it more than five stars, but alas
Asteruse, Aster, or Alabaster is the main character and was chosen by the three fates before birth.
Aster was chosen to be a false hero and was made undead by will of the fates shortly before being murdered the first time.
Zariel, hero turned to godhood pending, gives the option to Aster to work with him against the fates.
The ensuing wandering story was not expected by anyone inside the story, including the fates, for better or for worse.
Aster was chosen before birth
and was chosen again as Zariel's champion.
The beginning was typical hero fashion with hidden cheats.
The undead beginning was typical anti-hero with emo vibes and an overpowering thirst for revenge.
Despite the cliche beginning, the paragraph that made me the happiest was when "A" decides to go against "Z"'s "suggestion" because most of this novel is Aster going along with other people's suggestions. (For example, Eliza's oath proposal.)
I wanted to dislike this novel, but, instead, I hope that Alter will fight the cliche, even if futile. ✊